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Nintendo Switch Online's N64 games have a few issues

Pak it in.

Nintendo's pricier Switch Online + Expansion Pack subscription is now available, including a selection of N64 classics - though not all are working as intended.

Subscribers to the £35-a-year catalogue have reported a number of general issues, including lag and low frame rates. But a couple of games also feature more specific problems.

Mario Kart 64, for example, displays a warning that the game will not let you save Ghost Data - as this feature required an N64 Controller Pak in the original game.

This emulated version of N64 does not appear to have been altered to support this via other means. (And no, there's no slot for a Controller Pak in the Switch's new N64 controller!)

Here's a few images of this issue, from Martin's early morning playthrough:

Sin and Punishment is another game with an issue, this time with how the Switch version translates the original game's controls.

Here, the strafe left and right actions were mapped to the yellow controller buttons in the original. In this emulated version, these are replicated on the Switch's face buttons in the diagram seen below.

But, as the controller map shows, the Switch version also has you pressing the right trigger to shoot, which remaps the face buttons at the same time - removing the move right button in the process.

Next, onto Mario 64 - and less of an issue but more an annoying quirk.

On Nintendo Switch Online, Mario 64 offers a different version in Japan that includes rumble. This is the Japanese-only Shindou version with Rumble Pak support - meaning you'll need to change your Switch's region to Japan to play the game with vibration. European and North American catalogues only feature the game's launch version.

Lastly, some examples of those issues with lag, which produce warped versions of these iconic N64 startup screens. Somewhat creepy, and perfect for Halloween!

Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack also includes access to Animal Crossing: New Horizons expansion Happy Home Paradise when it arrives on 5th November. A 12-month subscription costs £35/$50 for an individual membership or £60/$80 for the family option, supporting up to eight accounts.

As a reminder, here are the games available at launch:

Nintendo 64 launch line-up:

  • Super Mario 64
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
  • Mario Kart 64
  • Lylat Wars
  • Sin and Punishment
  • Dr. Mario 64
  • Mario Tennis 64
  • Operation: WinBack
  • Yoshi's Story

Sega Mega Drive launch line-up:

  • Sonic the Hedgehog 2
  • Streets of Rage 2
  • Ecco the Dolphin
  • Castlevania: Bloodlines
  • Contra: Hard Corps
  • Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine
  • Golden Axe
  • Gunstar Heroes
  • M.U.S.H.A.
  • Phantasy Star IV
  • Ristar
  • Shining Force
  • Shinobi 3: Return of the Ninja Master
  • Strider

Upcoming titles:

  • Banjo-Kazooie
  • Pokémon Snap
  • The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask
  • Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards
  • Mario Golf
  • Paper Mario
  • F-Zero X

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Tom Phillips avatar

Tom Phillips


Tom is Eurogamer's Editor-in-Chief. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon. Tom joined Eurogamer in 2010 following a stint running a Nintendo fansite, and still owns two GameCubes. He also still plays Pokémon Go every day.